“If the child is raised by two gay fathers, he is going to be gay.”
“It’s weird for children to be around such people.”
We often hear these stereotypes from people who are homophobic or misunderstand the LGBTQIA+ community. They falsely believe that growing up in a homosexual household will negatively affect children’s thinking and cause them to become gay.
However, this logic is flawed. My parents are heterosexual, but did that stop me from being gay? No. In the same way, a child born in a homosexual household could very well be straight. Your upbringing does not change your sexuality. Sexuality comes from a complex set of scientific factors. What upbringing does have is a strong influence on is a child’s happiness and wellbeing, and it does not matter whether their upbringing comes from a heterosexual or homosexual household.
Most research studies, according to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), suggest that children with two mothers or two fathers fare equally as well as children with heterosexual parents. In fact, one large study of children raised by lesbian mothers or gay fathers found no differences in emotional functioning, sexual orientation, stigmatisation, gender role behaviour, behavioural adjustment, gender identity, learning or grade point averages between children raised by same-sex parents and children raised by heterosexual parents.
It makes no difference if the parents are gay, straight or anything in between. The child will grow into who they are. They will identify with whatever makes them feel the most comfortable, regardless of how they were nurtured.
More than that, homosexual parents are in a position to be more sensitive of their children’s feelings. They have a harder time conceiving than heterosexual parents, so they adopt, foster or use a surrogate. They not only devote the majority of their time but also a significant amount of money to their child, indicating that they genuinely care about them and will go to any length to ensure their happiness.
Furthermore, it’s quite possible that one of the homosexual parents has struggled with their identities, homophobia and hatred throughout their lives. As a result, they are more likely than straight parents to discuss these issues with their children and be more open about it. They are more likely to understand and support their child because it is highly probable that they have been in a similar scenario to them.
In many households, there is this notion of not talking about sexuality and gender in front of children. It’s one of those things where even the individuals who consider themselves to be allies keep the concept of the LGBTQIA+ community away from their children. They have an idea that kids will not be able to handle learning anything about the community and that the best thing to do is to wait until they are older. What they don’t think about is that until they are older, their surroundings or social circles might have already influenced the idea of homophobia and transphobia in their minds by making the community look bad. It’s the society and people around them who have made them think like that.
Your kids won’t “turn gay” if you just teach them what it means to be LGBTQIA+ and how to be human with them. If you teach your children to be respectful to everyone, why does “everyone” not include the LGBTQIA+ community? In most same-sex households, parents try to teach their children as much as they can about the community and to help them understand that this is someone’s identity and that they should be respected and treated just like any other individual.